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Seabeck talks septic

"A new septic system and breakwater are foremost in the minds of Seabeck residents.Government officials and Seabeck residents met Tuesday to discuss priorities for the small town in the age of rapid growth. A lot of us remember the Seabeck of yesterday, but a lot has changed, said County Commissioner Tim Botkin. It's time to address those changes.Receiving the most attention was the state of the septic system around the Seabeck Marina. If we don't solve the septic problem, there won't be a Seabeck, said Dennis McBreen, a former owner of the marina.County health officials have said in recent years that the marina's septic system was inadequate. Bremerton/Kitsap County Health District Director Willa Fisher said Seabeck Bay, which is surrounded by most of Seabeck's businesses, is being polluted by sewage.In the past, the health district has set deadlines for the septic system to be upgraded, but the deadlines keep getting pushed back. If the system is not upgraded to meet regulations, Fisher said business in the marina area could be shut down. Seabeck residents and business owners, however, say the options presented to them are too expensive and unrealistic to be enacted at once. Business owners hired an engineer to design a system that would run sewage from the marina district to a treatment tank near Fire Station 53 on Seabeck Highway. Initial estimates have the project costing more than $100,000, a price tag Seabeck residents say is too high. Instead, business owners proposed a three-step plan involving on-site Accelerated Treatment Units and running sewage to an off-site treatment area that would include public restrooms.Business owners said the health district is balking at the plan, however, until Seabeck guarantees it will go all the way to step three. Although the Seabeck business community has money to start the plan, they cannot guarantee they will have the money to complete it.We have the money for step one, McBreen said. We'll be happy to move on if someone could find us some grant money. We'll work like a bugger.McBreen said Botkin is working with business owners to find a site for the septic treatment center.A meeting is scheduled for Thursday, June 22 at the Health District office to discuss septic sites.Seabeck residents also expressed concern that the taxes they send to the county doesn't get spent in Seabeck. Several asked the Port of Bremerton to buy the port in Seabeck and fix it up with a breakwater. Officials countered by saying people always pay taxes into things that might not effect them directly. Botkin quipped that they want everything but don't want to pay for anything.Botkin also said since Seabeck wants to remain a small community, it is not going to get the tax revenue larger communities enjoy.I've always heard how Seabeck wants to remain a small town, Botkin said. That's what I'm still hearing."

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